If you got hurt on someone else’s property due to the carelessness or inaction of the owner, you might be wondering how you could win your slip and fall case. The short answer is that you must satisfy all of the essential elements of a personal injury claim or lawsuit. You will need to show that the property owner’s negligence directly led to your injuries and that you suffered losses as a result.
We can help you demonstrate each of these essential elements of your case.
You Must Be Able to Show That a Hazard on the Property Caused Your Injury
If a property owner neglected to remove or address a hazard—whether at a business, a private residence, or even a public property—and this hazard led to your injuries, you could have the basis of a viable slip and fall case.
However, if there was not a dangerous condition on the property that made you slip and fall, you cannot hold the owner liable. The owner must have been negligent in some way for you to have a valid injury claim. Similarly, the flaw that caused your fall must be deemed sufficiently dangerous for you to be successful in your claim.
You Must Demonstrate That the Property Owner Should Have Been Aware of a Hazard
Another element of a successful slip and fall case is that the owner knew or should have known about the property defect. The law will not hold an owner liable for a defect that they could not have been expected to know about. However, if a routine inspection could have led to the discovery of the hazard, they could be liable.
When an owner acts with conscious disregard for the safety of others or fails to take reasonable steps to keep the property safe, the owner can be responsible for the losses of people who get hurt as a result. The owner cannot avoid liability by intentionally choosing not to look for things that need repairs or other maintenance.
We can help you gather evidence to prove this element of your case.
You Must Be Able to Show That the Owner Failed to Take Action
Once we establish that the owner knew or should have known about the dangerous condition, we must then show that the owner failed to take appropriate action to keep people safe from harm.
Depending on the circumstances, we can show evidence that the owner:
- Failed to repair the defect within a reasonable amount of time. By way of example, the freezer section of a grocery store could experience ongoing leaks, leading to wet spots on the floor. The owner may have waited far too long to call a repair person.
- Failed to post warnings about the condition. Let’s say that customers track water into a store when it rains. The owner may have failed to post warning signs to notify shoppers of the possibility of a slick floor.
- Failed to timely and properly inspect the premises. Property owners should regularly check their premises for dangerous conditions. The owner may have failed to properly inspect the premises or identify a hazard.
- Failed to block off the area to prevent injuries. The owner could have failed to set up “caution” cones around the perimeter of a floor hazard, which could have kept people from entering an area with a spill until the issue could be addressed.
If a property owner failed to meet these responsibilities, they could be liable. We can help you demonstrate any evidence of negligence.
Your Conduct Is Part of the Liability Analysis
We all have a duty to be observant when walking on the sidewalk, in a shop, or in other places. To win your slip and fall claim, you will need to establish that you did your part and that you were not liable for your own fall.
If you happened to run into something that is obvious, like an aisle of canned goods at the grocery store, the store is unlikely to owe you any money for your injuries. Also, if there was an obvious defect that was properly blocked off by employees, you should exercise common sense and avoid the situation.
You Must Have an Actual Injury
If you are fortunate enough to avoid injuries or losses after a slip and fall, you will not have a premises liability claim against the owner. However, if you were injured (physically, emotionally, or financially), you could seek compensation from the property owner.
One way that we quantify losses in a slip and fall claim is with your medical bills or even testimony from your doctors.
Contact the Attorneys at Bernstein & Poisson for Help Today
We recommend that you do not wait too long to take action. According to the American Bar Association (ABA), you will lose the right to seek compensation if you miss the deadline.
You can call us today for a complimentary case review. We are ready to fight for your compensation.